Virus and Antibiotics
Country: United States
Date: June 2006
Why don't antibiotics work on a virus?
Viruses and bacteria are completely different structurally. Their
molecular structure and protein structure are different as
well as their mechanisms of infection. Antibiotics have specific
components that targets bacterial structure and function. Because
viruses are so different, antibiotics have no effect on them.
Saundra Sample, D.V.M.
Antibiotics like penicillin and it's many derivatives block the synthesis of
bacterial cells walls. Streptomycin interferes with protein synthese by
binding to bacterial ribosomes. Since viruses contain neither cell walls nor
ribosomes, they are immune to the action of these antibiotics.
Ron Baker, Ph.D
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Update: June 2012